Submission: The Online Safety Bill

Digital Rights Watch provided a submission to the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communication on the proposed Online Safety Bill 2020.

While we welcome the objectives of the draft Bill to “improve and promote Australia’s online safety” and note that some of the powers in the Bill create critical pathways of redress for children and adults suffering bullying, abuse and non-consensual sharing of intimate images, we are concerned that several powers proposed in the Bill will undermine digital rights and exacerbate harm for vulnerable groups.

You can read our explainer on the Bill here.

A summary of our recommendations are:

  • Include a sunset clause.
  • Remove the adult cyber-abuse content scheme. ​
  • Establish a multi-stakeholder review board for activity covered by the Bill.
  • Require transparency reporting on complaints and take-downs.
  • Articulate a meaningful and timely appeals process.
  • Include an explicit assurance that ISPs and/or digital platforms will not be expected to weaken or undermine encryption in any way to comply with any parts of this Bill. ​

You can read the whole submission, including more details about our recommendations, here.